Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Big Brother Watches Blackwater

The Blackwater consulting group, which has a tendency to shoot its way through traffic, has just had its horns trimmed. Henceforth, says our State Department, the vehicles driven by its favorite taxi service for use in invaded countries will be equipped with dashboard cameras that will show what they have been up to.

Perhaps this is because the recent mass killing of 21 Iraqi civilians by Blackwater employees, who sprayed bullets indiscriminately to clear traffic from a square, was so visibly overboard that State was embarrassed. Perhaps this is because the first report out of State was written by Blackwater personnel, totally exonerating their buddies. Perhaps this is because the world is watching.

The world is watching ever more closely, so the government must watch ever more closely those who act in its behalf.

The government thinks that it must also watch ever more closely those of us who blithely sit and brush our cats, but most likely it is going to discover a dry hole. The evil-doers are running government, and that's the last place they'll think to look.

Today our congress of toe-tapping super-patriots is voting to make legal the government's random surveillance of its own citizens. The government has been watching us all for years. Everybody pretty much knows this. Congress is just making it public knowledge.

Perhaps now we can begin to discuss publicly how much we really want to watch ourselves. Should every area of our homes be open to surveillance cameras, or are there places we should be allowed to keep private? If someone looks strange, should we be able to find out why? Should anyone be able to find your address? What if you worked for Blackwater?

If someone is different from us, how much should we change him?

We require bisexuals to marry and are surprised at the results. We give the dumber schoolkids C's and D's and are surprised when they turn sullen. Lack of intelligence is a failing, one that can be corrected, we think.

Government can look, but can it see?

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